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Psychosocial well-being and community participation of service dog partners

Collins, DM and Fitzgerald, SG and Sachs-Ericsson, N and Scherer, M and Cooper, RA and Boninger, ML (2006) Psychosocial well-being and community participation of service dog partners. Disability and Rehabilitation: Assistive Technology, 1 (1-2). 41 - 48. ISSN 1748-3107

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Purpose. This cross-sectional study examined whether partnering with service dogs influenced psychosocial well-being and community participation of adult individuals using wheelchairs or scooters. Method. One hundred and fifty-two people were recruited and group-matched, resulting in 76 participants with and 76 without service dogs. Standardized scale scores for affect, depressive symptoms, self-esteem, and loneliness were used to operationally define psychosocial well-being. Community participation was assessed with the Social Integration domain of the Craig Handicap Assessment and Reporting Technique. Results. Psychosocial characteristics did not differ significantly between those partnered with and without service dogs overall. However, of participants with progressive conditions, those with service dogs demonstrated significantly higher positive affect scores than comparison group participants. Among those with clinical depression, service dog partners scored significantly higher in positive affect. Finally, regardless of whether individuals had service dogs, fewer depressive symptoms and being female or married were predictors of greater community participation. Conclusion. Select individuals may experience psychosocial benefits from partnering with service dogs. However, it is unclear if these benefits might also be derived from companion dogs. Further research is needed to substantiate the findings of this study. © 2006 Informa UK Ltd All rights reserved.


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Item Type: Article
Status: Published
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Collins, DM
Fitzgerald, SG
Sachs-Ericsson, N
Scherer, M
Boninger, MLboninger@pitt.eduBONINGER
Centers: Other Centers, Institutes, Offices, or Units > Human Engineering Research Laboratories
Date: 1 December 2006
Date Type: Publication
Journal or Publication Title: Disability and Rehabilitation: Assistive Technology
Volume: 1
Number: 1-2
Page Range: 41 - 48
DOI or Unique Handle: 10.1080/09638280500167183
Schools and Programs: School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences > Rehabilitation Science and Technology
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 1748-3107
MeSH Headings: Activities of Daily Living--psychology; Adult; Animals; Bonding, Human-Pet; Cross-Sectional Studies; Disabled Persons--psychology; Disabled Persons--rehabilitation; Dogs; Female; Humans; Male; Psychiatric Status Rating Scales; Questionnaires; Wheelchairs
PubMed ID: 19256166
Date Deposited: 03 Oct 2012 20:30
Last Modified: 05 Feb 2019 03:55


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